Mathematical models of HIV pathogenesis and treatment

Bioessays. 2002 Dec;24(12):1178-87. doi: 10.1002/bies.10196.


We review mathematical models of HIV dynamics, disease progression, and therapy. We start by introducing a basic model of virus infection and demonstrate how it was used to study HIV dynamics and to measure crucial parameters that lead to a new understanding of the disease process. We discuss the diversity threshold model as an example of the general principle that virus evolution can drive disease progression and the destruction of the immune system. Finally, we show how mathematical models can be used to understand correlates of long-term immunological control of HIV, and to design therapy regimes that convert a progressing patient into a state of long-term non-progression.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • Animals
  • Antiviral Agents / pharmacology
  • Disease Progression
  • HIV / physiology*
  • HIV Infections / therapy*
  • HIV Infections / transmission*
  • HIV Infections / virology*
  • Humans
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Time Factors


  • Antiviral Agents